The jury of 53rd International Film Festival in Goa has slammed the controversial movie “The Kashmir Files”, which revolves around the killings and exodus of Kashmiri Pandits in 1990 from Kashmir Valley. Calling it “propaganda” and a “vulgar movie”, Israeli filmmaker Nadav Lapid, who headed the IFFI jury, said “all of them” were “disturbed and shocked” to see the film screened at the festival.
“It seemed to us like a propagandist movie inappropriate for an artistic, competitive section of such a prestigious film festival. I feel totally comfortable to share openly these feelings here with you on stage. Since the spirit of having a festival is to accept also a critical discussion which is essential for art and for life,” Mr Lapid said in his address.
The Anupam Kher, Mithun Chakraborty and Pallavi Joshi starrer, directed by Vivek Agnihotri, was featured in the “Panorama” section of the festival last week.
The film has been praised by the BJP and has been declared tax-free in most BJP-ruled states and was a box office hit. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union home minister Amit Shah have praised on the movie.
Many, however, have criticised the content, calling it a one-sided portrayal of the events that is sometimes factually incorrect and claiming the movie has a “propagandist tone”.
In May, Singapore banned the movie, citing concerns over its “potential to cause enmity between different communities”.
“The film will be refused classification for its provocative and one-sided portrayal of Muslims and the depictions of Hindus being persecuted in the ongoing conflict in Kashmir,” read a statement from the Singapore government, reported news agency Press Trust of India.
Mr Agnihotri has alleged an “international political campaign” against him and his film by foreign media.
He claimed this was the reason his press conference was cancelled by the Foreign Correspondents Club and the Press Club of India in May.